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Alleged Seminole Heights killer tied to sports

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By Anthony Caruso III| Publisher

Howell Donaldson III is the alleged Seminole Heights serial killer, who allegedly shot and killed four people. Donaldson, 24, before he took the path that has him in jail at the moment, could possibly spend the rest of his life in prison if convicted.

He played high school basketball at Alonso High School in Tampa, Florida. Trai Donaldson, as he was known, because he was the third generation in his family, also has a bio page with the St. John Red Storm’s men’s basketball team in New York.

Trai Donaldson (Bio Page from St. John's Red Storm)

Trai Donaldson (Bio Page from St. John’s Red Storm)

However, unlike other bio pages for athletic programs, he has no statistics on his so it is unknown if he ever played for them. While attending St. John’s, where he graduated, he wrote, “I love basketball and plan on walking on for St. John’s basketball team.”

When he was in New York, he worked for the New York Mets at Citi Field in Queens, New York. With the Mets, he was their “Guest Experience Host.”

Donaldson said, while working with the Mets, he helped scan tickets for people entering the stadium and worked private VIP clubs.

He also worked an event for the NBA in February 2015.

A tip on Tuesday afternoon from a Ybor City McDonald’s brought closure to the case. Donaldson asked his manager to watch a loaded 9mm handgun.

After asking for his manager to watch the gun, Donaldson left to “take out a loan,” before coming back to McDonald’s and was arrested at the scene.

McDonald, whose family runs Shear Excellence Hair Academy, a Hair and Beauty School, in Tampa, Fla. had a brother and sister. He had no criminal record in Florida before his arrest on Tuesday afternoon.

As he allegedly killed people, the media followed the case more and more — and identified it as a serial killer very early on. There were 51 days from when the first individual died in October and Tuesday’s arrest.

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